By Ofeliya Afandiyeva
The volume of gold and silver extracted in Azerbaijan grew by 21 percent and 33.2 percent respectively year-on-year in 2019, AzerGold's representative has said.
Addressing the press conference held on February 24 to sum up the results of 2019, the Chairman of the Executive Board of the company, Zakir Ibrahimov, said that although AzerGold had planned to extract 50,000 ounces of gold, by the end of the year, 10.4 percent more, or 55,200 ounces of gold, were extracted.
In addition, in 2019, it was planned to extract 87,400 ounces of silver, while the actual volume exceeded the forecast by 17.9 percent, reaching 103,000 ounces.
“Extraction figures for 2019 are a record indicator observed for the entire period of activity of the Chovdar mining complex,” Ibrahimov stressed.
Chovdar ore field is a perspective area with particular and complex gold deposits located in northern part of Dashkasan region.
Furthermore, Ibrahimov noted that AzerGold CJSC significantly increased all types of tax payments last year, adding that approximately $7.9 million were transferred to Azerbaijan’s state budget as a whole in 2019.
“Given that this amount was $7.4 million in 2018, budget payments increased by 6.7 percent last year,” he reminded.
It should be noted that in order to organize the export of extracted precious metals to global markets, as well as form Azerbaijan’s gold reserves at the expense of Azerbaijani gold, the State Oil Fund of Azerbaijan (SOFAZ) organized the purchase of 57,000 ounces of pure gold, which makes 95 percent of the total sales volume (about $85 million).
Establishing by the Decree of the President Ilham Aliyev in 2015, AzerGold is engaged in the study, research, exploration, management of precious and non-ferrous metal deposits, their extraction, processing and sale, as well as the application of new technologies in this area, improving the material and technical base and other work related to the development of this sphere.
In 2017-2020, AzerGold CJSC sold more than 173,000 ounces of gold and 290,000 ounces of silver.
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